In the heart of London, Morph’s Epic Art Adventure is turning heads, showcasing a myriad of vibrant, inspiring sculptures. But what’s it all about, and why are we here at Gamma involved? Well, as a part of our commitment to ‘Communications with a Conscience’, we decided to sponsor a unique piece that embodies the spirit of Shakespeare, colloquially known as ‘The Bard’. This sponsorship aligns completely with Gamma’s ethos, promoting inclusivity and creativity whilst also supporting the incredible work of Whizz-Kidz. As the UK’s leading charity for young wheelchair users, Whizz-Kidz strives to create a society where every young wheelchair user can enjoy mobility, inclusion, and empowerment. The Bard sculpture we’ve chosen to sponsor specifically encapsulates the power of language and communication, something we felt symbolised Gamma’s dedication to creating meaningful conversations and fostering a more inclusive society.
But what about the artist behind this piece? We took some time to speak with her and learn more about her process, her life and her reasons for getting involved.
“The one thing that I enjoy about my profession as an artist is the versatility it offers. I take delight in creating sculptures for trails, painting detailed landscapes with acrylics, and sketching with pencils. I have a particular love for pet portraiture as well,” Susan Webber revealed, sharing her passion for her craft.
Susan’s journey in the art industry took an exciting turn with the Morph project in collaboration with Whizz Kids. Having previously been involved in several sculpture trails, notably with Wild in Art, Susan brings a wealth of experience to the project. “It’s always good to see how the sculptures raise awareness during the trails. The fact that they also raise money for charity in the auctions afterward is an added bonus,” she added.
Susan’s love for art has been a life-long journey. “Throughout my life, I have drawn, painted, and made art. I was advised to get a ‘sensible job’ after school. However, I couldn’t resist my passion and went on to study illustration in my 30s,” she recalled. After caring for her parents until their passing in 2013, she took her friend’s advice and decided to make a living from her art.
In her early days as a self-employed artist, she took on several commissions, like ‘The Story of the Sea’ at Minehead Harbour. To supplement her income, she accepted gardening jobs. “I now find myself in a ‘sensible’ job as a full-time gardener, with my artwork as a spare-time occupation. My main art focus is drawing, particularly architecture, but I dabble in acrylic painting too, creating the occasional mural on cupboard doors!”
The choice to depict Shakespeare, “The Bard,” for the Morph sculpture trail was no accident. “I often find myself looking at quotes from Shakespeare and find many of them inspirational. I thought painting a Morph as ‘The Bard’ would be a great way to share these quotes,” she explained.
Creating these sculptures is a process Susan relishes. “Designs often take a day to complete. It starts with rough concept sketches, and then I transfer the idea onto the templates. The fun starts when the blank sculpture arrives, ready for sanding, priming, and painting. For The Bard, I used a basic red colour that needed two coats. The best part was painting on the quotes by hand.”
Recently, Susan got the chance to view the sculptures on the trail during a visit to London. “We were in London for a concert, and the next morning, I did my morning run along the South Bank and saw a few Morphs, including mine by The Globe. I stopped to take a selfie and to catch my breath!”
When asked who she would love to see with The Bard, Susan had a couple of options in mind: “I’m torn between Grayson Perry, whose work I admire and am inspired by, and Timothy West, who I know has performed in Shakespeare plays and would appreciate the quotations painted on the Morph.”
As the Morph’s Epic Art Adventure continues to inspire and dazzle on the streets of London, the impact of Susan Webber’s ‘The Bard’ sculpture transcends simple aesthetic appreciation. In essence, it’s an embodiment of Gamma’s ‘Communications with a Conscience’ initiative, advocating for inclusivity, celebrating creativity, and supporting the invaluable work of Whizz-Kidz. At the same time, it’s a reflection of Susan’s artistic journey, her enduring passion for art, and her commitment to sharing inspiration through her work. Every brush stroke on ‘The Bard’, every quote immortalised in paint, resonates with the power of language and communication, reminding us of the integral role these aspects play in shaping a more inclusive – and thoughtfully communicative – society. For Susan, it’s not just about creating beautiful art; it’s about sparking meaningful conversations, raising awareness, and making a difference – a purpose that aligns seamlessly with the very essence of the Morph event and Gamma’s ethos. That is the true beauty of art – it has the power to speak volumes without saying a word, to foster connections, and to make us see the world from a different perspective.